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Takumi-kun, Volume 1: June Pride by Kazumi…

Takumi-kun, Volume 1: June Pride

by Kazumi Ohya

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Middle of the road fluff, with good art. Gui declares his love in the first few pages and states that he admired Takumi later in the story, but why? Takumi didn't believe it and neither did I. ( )
  saturnnalia | May 13, 2011 |
Takumi is attending an elite (of course) all boys' school where one of the most popular guys around becomes his roommate and confesses to him. They become a couple, but have to deal with the fact that Takumi has intimacy issues dues to past trauma.

Well. This is probably one of the worst yaoi I've read in a while. This manga gets off to a wonderfully bad start by clearly wanting to start of at the start/middle of the relationship but apparently not having the guts to admit it wants to do so, instead starting from the beginning, throwing clumsy character introductions at a frantic half-page-per-character pace for a while, and then flinging the characters together so fast and with so little reason that I seriously thought it might have been a joke. No, really, I'm not being snarky. It just seemed too much to be real, I thought maybe it was a fantasy of the main character or something. Maybe they were writing a story? I was wrong, of course.

This is supposed to be a romance/drama with little to no humor, but the character motivations/actions often make little to no sense (I mean to say I'll accept this a little more from a comedy.) The “emotional problems” of the main character supposedly make him somewhat disliked at school, but it turns out really he just doesn't like to be touched. When he gets together with Gui it supposedly makes him happy, but sometimes he acts like he doesn't even consider them to be 'together' and other times he seems to accept they are but it brings him nothing but stress or guilt. He worries about rumors spreading about them, but not out of fear or embarrassment or homophobia. As far as we can tell, it's cause rumors are just bad in general so let's not do anything that would cause any of any sort. (What the hell?)

Gui is portrayed as the eternally accepting, understanding, patient lover, willing to wait out Takumi's problem with touching. But besides the guilt-tripping him about not having sex and the eventual 'I'm going to fuck you for your own good' we all knew would happen, he also pulls some random stuff like making a bet with another student who wants Takumi, saying whoever does best in a marathon they're doing for PE will get him as a prize. Cause we all know that's what WE do when we hear someone making indecent comments about the person we love. (Again, the HELL?)

As for the art, it's alright. There's nothing unique or memorable about it, and sometimes I had to look little closer to not mix people up, but none of the guys look too girly and it's not totally unappealing. It is a little too shoujo-ey for my tastes, though.

I guess this story was originally from light novels. I suppose I can see that. There's nothing great here, but you don't have to be great to be popular BL, and I can imagine how some of the stuff that comes off as utterly clumsy and ridiculous here could have been caused by a less-than-fantastic readapting of a better work. Even if you've got a kinder view of most BL than me, though, this manga really is below average. Almost anything will at least have more consistent portrayals of their characters than this. (And the mature rating is apparently for themes rather than sex, as there's barely any, and none of it very graphic or involved, so don't expect anything much on that end, either.) Seriously, spend your money somewhere else. ( )
  narwhaltortellini | May 17, 2008 |
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Shidou Acadamy, high school division.
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Scarred since childhood, Takumi Hayama was afraid to get close to anyone. An outcast in his own school, Takumi comes across the charismatic and wealthy student Gui, the only person who doesn't see Takumi as odd. But how will the two cope when Gui confesses his love for Takumi? And will Gui discover the secret trauma that closed Takumi's heart?
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